One of the best things about the online world is the ability to reinvent yourself. You can make a version of yourself that you have always wished to be. In the online world, you can shed who you are for a little while. That can be a gift for many people. A fresh start. A more true version of you.
Belle is an anime that explores what that can really mean for people. The good and the bad.
Suzu is a high school student from a small rural town. She is a shy, sad girl who is trying to find herself after tragedy. When she plugs into a new virtual world she is given a new chance. The world of U utilizes new technology that syncs with the user to create an immersive experience. There Suzu is able to find her voice again. As Belle she became an internet sensation through song. Everything changes when she encounters a mysterious user.
From there Suzu goes on a journey to find this user. Meanwhile her real life is also becoming more difficult. Between trying to keep her identity of Belle a secret, dealing with her past and navigating high school she is becoming overwhelmed. Can Suzu find this new user? Can she find the courage and happiness that she deserves outside of U?
Belle is a gorgeous anime. The decision to use two different styles of animation was a risky one. In Belle it most assuredly paid off. The sharp differences really reinforce that U and the real world are not the same. In terms of using art to help further the storyline this was a genius move. It also shows the amount of talent in the art team for the movie.
Music also plays a huge role. Belle is a musical diva after all. Music is an interictal part of the story. It is something that connects Suzu’s past and her present. Connects the real world to the virtual world. The music in this movie is moving. Honestly I think the best thing I can say is that I have been listening to it on repeat. That should speak volumes about the caliber of the music used.
I would HIGHLY recommend Belle. It is a moving story about grief and self discovery. I loved it. I also had a lot of big feelings throughout the movie. Bring some tissues and get ready for some great twists.
I am including a trigger warning below. If you don’t want to see it then don’t click below.
ALWAYS KEEP SPARKLING!
One thought on “Belle: An Anime Review”
I absolutely adore Belle — it was the first film to give me literal goosebumps in a while! The frame with the whale—and the music!! It’s pure magic 💕 this is a great review, I’m going to need to rewatch it and pronto!